The highlight games for this weekend’s action are CHELSEA versus ASTON VILLA and LEEDS UNITED versus LIVERPOOL. Our feature columnist, John Newsome previews these as well as all game-week 4 matches with his unique and insightful commentary. You can view all previous analysis from John’s regular column here: English Premier League Predictions For Saturday.
Please note all prices quoted below were correct at the time of publication
CRYSTAL PALACE v TOTTENHAM
BT Sport 12.30 in England
Crystal Palace under the new manager who has the guise of several pre-names, Patrick Vieira finally scored a goal in this campaigns Premier League and like London Buses, 2-came along at once. The pre-names are World Cup Winner-Patrick Vieira and Roy Keane’s Best Mate-Patrick Vieira.
There was a recent video on the new phenomenon that is Tik Tok (isn’t that the sound a clock makes?) that showed Roy doing his day job as a Sky Sports pundit, at the side of the Emirates pitch, with an Arsenal spectator enquiring politely, ‘Where’s Patrick Vieira, Roy?’ To which the enigmatic Mr Keane, pointed to his trouser pocket and replied, ‘He’s in there!’ Quality, can’t stop us laughing, whatever is happening in the World!
Palace headed over London, to take on West Ham and after the Hammers went ahead twice, on-loan Chelsea boy, Conor Gallagher scored, not one but two for Roy’s mate to earn a point from a draw by a Desmond 2-2 scoreline.
Although not a victory, it wasn’t a defeat either and gave the Eagle Ultras something to cheer about on the Tube home. That’s now 2-Draws from 3 fixtures which is a great platform for Patrick to build from.
Conor, who’s only 21-year old, was on loan at West Brom last term, with Chelsea recognising the talent of the lad and not wanting to sell permanently thus allowing another loan move.
Patrick has brought in the Celtic Striker Odsonne Edouard, who comes to Selhurst Park on a 5-year deal worth in the region of £14 Million. Odsonne is still reeling from his glaring miss in last Sunday’s Old Firm Derby up in Glasgow against Rangers.
Football reconvenes after the International Break and the Summer Transfer Window which as seen the lead story, that of Harry Kane to Man City, fizzle out into nothing. Mrs Kane had to ring Pickfords up and postpone the removal van for the 1st of September, which was booked to take the furniture up to Manchester.
One word in that sentence to ponder is ‘postpone’ as whilst Harry Kane has ruled out a move away from Tottenham, there were a glaring couple of words in Big Harry’s public relations inspired press release and that was ‘this Summer’.
Harry scored 2-goals to help Spurs into the Europa Conference League Group Stage (no? Still not a clue!) then subsequently started against Watford in the final Premier League fixture before the break with all the faithful singing the lad’s praises.
However, the fact that Harry stated ‘this Summer’ throws up continued speculation that his future is not necessarily at the Chas and Dave Memorial Stadium.
The January Transfer Window will open up the possibility of this story continuing, with maybe a few private stipulations being agreed upon over the Summer. Daniel Levy is a shrewd businessman and knows that £120-£150 Million is a lot of money to turn down permanently.
It’s reported that Man City offered £128 Million for HK but Dan the Man wanted £150 Million, which City refused to pay. What’s £22 Million between friends?
A proviso in the Summer talks between all parties involved may have been that everyone would monitor the situation up to January and if Tottenham are not in contention to win the Premier League title, the £128 Million may be back on the table and Daniel will have accepted that Harry Kane is away.
In addition to that is although Mr Kane has helped Tottenham into the Europa Pub League and will no doubt play on a Thursday night in Armenia or Turkmenistan. In that particular competition, come January, if Man City or for that matter A N Other sign Harry, then the Big Man can still play in the Champions League for the remainder of the season and isn’t cup-tied.
The words ‘this Summer’ whilst only 2 in the Public Related Press Release, speak volumes in the whole context of Harry Kane’s future at Tottenham. Don’t be surprised if Mrs Kane is back on the phone to Pickford’s at the end of January, re-booking the removal van for the trip up to Manchester.
All that said, young Harry might just think there’s a chance of a Premier League Winner’s medal on the table if the Kanes stay in London. Tottenham currently reside at the summit of the table, being the only team out of the 20, with a 100% record, having attained 3-victories from 3-fixtures.
Spur’s last outing against Watford saw them get the win by a 1-0 scoreline with Son Heung-Min scoring the only goal.
That victory, which saw Mr Kane start a Premier League fixture for the first time this season following on from a cameo appearance against Wolves the previous week and being absent from the defeat against his new club, Man City, in the opener.
The 1-0 scoreline was the 3rd in succession, which could offer up so many conclusions, such as Tottenham have struggled to score without Harry, have been strong in defence and without Nice-One Son, who has scored 2 of the 3, may not have won as many.
However, no one and their Granny will care and dissect the performances, with the LillyWhites faithful just being happy with the 3-Wins and residing at the Top of the Pile.
Added to that, the North London rivals from down the road, Arsenal, sit rock bottom of the Premier League with 3-Losses. To all connected with Tottenham, that’s the ultimate footballing Yin and Yang. Nuno has dabbled in the Transfer Market, signing Emerson Royal for a fee of £25 Million.
The Barcelona/Brazilian is a tall Defender who can play in the Centre or at Right-Back. Serge Aurier has had his contract terminated, allowing the Ivorian Defender the possibility of signing for any club over the next few weeks, outside of the Transfer Window.
The Right-Back had 1-year left of a 4-year deal with Spurs but both club and player felt it was time now, to part ways. There is a rumour that Arsenal are interested in Mr Aurier which would spice things up with memories evoked of the controversial switch by Sol Campbell from White Hart Lane to Highbury back in 2001.
The Big Man, HK, scored 1 of the 4 in the 4-0 victory for England, against Hungary over the International Break. Both teams were under the guidance of different managers when these two last met at Selhurst Park back in December 2020. Harry Kane scored in the 1st-half to give Jose Mourinho’s Spurs a lead at the break.
Roy Hodgson’s Palace left it late with Jeffrey Schlupp equalising in the 81st-minute to give both Londoners a share of the points, following a draw by a 1-1 scoreline.
888 Sport offer Crystal Palace at 39/10, the draw at 5/2 and slight Odds On 7/10 for Tottenham to come away with all 3-points.
888 Sport offer 4/1 that Harry Kane Scores First and 2/1 that Tottenham Win To Nil.
ARSENAL v NORWICH
15.00 in England
Over the weeks in this EveryTip column, there is usually a line about a relegation battle as a bit of fun for the top teams, last week being in the Man City v Arsenal preview. The fun has ended and this is now a serious reality with this relegation contest between the two teams residing at the foot of the table.
The shock in that is Arsenal are at rock bottom of the Top Flight for the first time since 1974.
Norwich are a place above but like the UK in the Eurovision, with Nil Points, however, the Gunners are in 20th due to a Minus-9 Goal Difference.
The Canaries are Minus-9 too but have scored a goal and conceded 10, whereas Arsenal have conceded 9, yet haven’t found the back of the net in the 3-Premier League fixtures so far.
Both, coincidentally, have suffered defeats against Man City by the same 5-0 scoreline, with Pep 2 losing in the last game before the break, up at the Etihad against his mate, Pep 1.
After losing 2-early goals, Arsenal and Mr Arteta’s task became impossible following a rash challenge by Granit Xhaka who was immediately shown a straight Red Card.
In truth, whilst everyone and their Aunty thought Granit’s challenge deserved a sending off, it wasn’t too bad and the lad did actually pull his legs away from Joao Cancelo to prevent injury.
It maybe didn’t warrant a Red but when things are against a team, it multiplies the adversity and that’s certainly what the Gunners are experiencing at the moment.
Arsenal conceded a 3rd, before half-time and then another 2, after the break to ultimately lose the fixture up North with the Gooners faithful heading for the train station, a long time before the final whistle.
Mikel Arteta isn’t immediately in danger of losing his job but the defeats can’t continue and to be fair, Norwich have turned up at just the right time, however, if the excitable Daniel Farke inspires his Canaries to a positive result, it could trigger Pep 2’s Job Seekers Allowance.
In an interview after the defeat against City, Mikel stated, ‘I question myself!’ The lad also needs to question Just For Men as the jet black hair dye isn’t covering up the grey that’s appearing like the cracks in the Arsenal defence.
What will hurt the Gooners faithful is the North London rivals, Tottenham sit at the top of the Premier League table with 3-Wins from 3, the only 100% record left this season. Ouch!
The Gunners have brought in the Japanese Defender-Takehiro Tomiyasu from Bologna for £20 Million, with Hector Bellerin heading out of London, joining up with Real Betis in Spain.
Ainsley Maitland-Niles, who this EveryTip contributor rates highly, was rumoured to be wanting away from the Emirates after appearing to be frozen out by Mikel Arteta, with a loan move to Everton lined up, however, supposedly, after ‘clear the air’ talks (whatever that means?) AMN is staying and may just feature today.
Will.i.an has left the North London club and headed back to Brazil to join up with the legendary Corinthians. Willian had 2-years remaining on his Arsenal contract but decided to cancel and forego £20 Million in wages to play football in his native country.
Not many professional footballers would give up £20 Million so it’s a credit to the lad for the gesture.
Another youngster who departs the Emirates on loan is Reiss Nelson joining the Dutch Eredivisie club Feyenoord.
Young Reiss did get 20-minutes in the opening game against Brentford but failed to optimise the opportunity and wasn’t seen again so definitely needs to be playing somewhere, as the lad doesn’t appear to be in Mikel’s plans.
Norwich, unlike today’s opponents, have finally scored a goal in the new Premier League campaign, with Teemu Pukki converting a 1st-half penalty against Leicester before the International Break.
At the time, Teemu’s goal equalised an earlier strike but Daniel’s men couldn’t stave off being devoured by the hungry Foxes with Brendan’s Wonderful’s scoring the winner in the 2nd-half to inflict the defeat of Daniel’s Excitable’s.
Norwich have strengthened in their defensive department by bringing in the Turkish Centre-Half, Ozan Kabak on-loan from Schalke. Ozan, aged just 21, had a brief stint at Anfield last term, playing in 9-games for Jurgen Klopp at the end of the 2020/21 season. Schalke finished bottom of the German Bundesliga and were relegated to the 2nd-tier.
As well as Ozak, Norwich have signed Mathias Normann on loan from FC Rostov, again, like most loan moves, with an option to buy, which basically means if the lads’ any good he stays, if he’s rubbish, he’s on the boat back home.
James from Swinton, nowhere near Carrow Rd was making Sunday lunch the other Wednesday and asked the lovely Jade if she liked ‘food’. To which the girlfriend replied that ‘food’ is what she tends to want to eat.
The Little Blunt is miserable at the moment following the fortunes of his 3-football clubs, Sheffield United, Barnsley and Norwich, with none doing particularly well. The Blades have brought in Conor Hourihane on-loan from Aston Villa who will definitely enhance the Yorkshire club.
Conor is a sublime footballer but has found the step-up to the Premier League, difficult at times, however, the Blunts should be excited by the signing of the ex-Barnsley FC player, with Jimbo doubly happy that a player from his first footballing love is coming to Bramall Lane.
Arsenal comfortably beat Norwich in July 2020, as the Canaries were coming to the end of their stay in the Top Flight before relegation.
Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang and Granit Xhaka scored in the 1st-half with Pierre-Emerick adding his 2nd and Cedric Soares completing the rout after the break, giving the Gunners a victory by a 4-0 scoreline. Mr Xhaka won’t be scoring this afternoon as the Swiss boy is suspended for the next 3-fixtures.
888 Sport offer Arsenal at Odds On 9/20, the draw at 33/10 and 55/10 for Norwich to come away with all 3-points.
888 Sport offer 4/1 that Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang Scores First and 5/4 that Arsenal Score in Both Halves.
BRENTFORD v BRIGHTON
15.00 in England
Brentford added a point to the 3, achieved in the opening game, with a draw in the ‘Dean Smith Derby’ by a 1-1 scoreline.
Ivan Toney, opened his Premier League account scoring for the Bees early in the 1st-half before Aston Villa equalised to take both teams in level at the break. With no further goals, it’s fair to say that Dean Smith won in his Derby.
The goal by Big Ivan will settle the nerves and emphasise the fact that the lad is now a Premier League player and can score in the Top Flight. Nice one Mr T!
It was relatively quiet on Transfer Deadline Day at the Community Stadium with Thomas Frank happy with his lot. Brighton suffered a defeat at the Amex last time out, losing against Everton by a 2-0 scoreline.
The Seagulls conceded a goal, either side of the break to ultimately lose the tie against a much-improved set of Merseyside Blues that are a different proposition under Rafa Benitez.
Graham Potter, sporting a new look with facial hair, had guided his boys to 2-victory’s in the previous games but came unstuck against the Toffees.
A lot appear to want a beard nowadays, Harry included, thinking that they somehow look cool and hip, however, John Newsome doesn’t like them as he doesn’t need added extras to make him look even uglier.
Despite the loss, Brighton will come again as it’s too early on in proceedings to dwell on defeats, it’s just a matter of parking that result and moving forward. Marc Cucurella, who is a Spanish Defender heads to the Amex on a 5-year deal for an undisclosed fee.
Those familiar with this column will know that ‘undisclosed’ means, ‘4-Bob and a Blackbirds egg’ That said, the fee, which is supposedly ‘undisclosed’ is around £16 Million. Blimey, Blackbirds have upped the price of their eggs! These two last met in February 2017, at Griffin Park, which at the time was a Championship affair.
Brentford’s Jota (not Diogo!) and Harlee Dean scored to give the Bees a lead at half-time. Lasse Vibe then missed a penalty for Brentford that would have given the home team a 3-goal advantage. Unfortunately, that was a costly error, with Brighton staging a comeback.
Solly March and Shane Duffy got the Seagulls back on level terms before the brilliantly named Konstantin Kerschbaumer scored in the 93rd-minute to put Brentford back in front. Special KK had only been on the pitch for 5-minutes after being introduced by Dean Smith late on in proceedings.
The home fans, jubilant for a matter of minutes, had their emotions turn to despair when Brighton’s Tomer Hemed equalised for Chris Hughton’s away team to give both a share of the points from a draw by a 3-3 scoreline.
Brighton went on to finish 2nd behind Newcastle to clinch promotion to the Premier League in 2017, with Brentford waiting, another 4-seasons to reach the Promised Land.
888 Sport offer Brentford at 17/10, the draw at 41/20 and 33/20 for Brighton to come away with all 3-points.
888 Sport offer 7/4 that Ivan Toney Scores Anytime and 4/1 that Brentford Score in Both Halves.
LEICESTER v MAN CITY
15.00 in England
Probably one of the games of the weekend, if not the season so far, however, for some reason, none of the TV broadcasters are showing this fixture live in England. The Foxes devoured the sorry Canaries at Carrow Rd, last time out, getting the away-day victory by a 2-1 scoreline.
The original Sheffield Superstar, Jamie Vardy opened the scoring after 8-minutes. Norwich equalised before half-time to take both teams in level at the break. Marc Albrighton then got onto the end of a Jimmy V assist to put Leicester back in front and with no further goals, Brendan’s Wonderful’s ran out winners.
Leicester have brought in Ademola Lookman on a loan deal from RB Leipzig for the remainder of the season, with a view to a permanent move back to England. Young Ademola was at Fulham last term, however, couldn’t help prevent the Cottagers relegation to the Championship.
A ridiculous attempt at a Panenka penalty in a game against West Ham last November springs to mind. Jamie Vardy won’t be allowing Mr Lookman any penalty attempts, Panenka or otherwise.
Dennis Praet moves to Torino to allow Ademola Lookman into the club, which appears a fair move and the Foxes faithful no doubt wish Dennis the Menace all the best for the future. Lennon the pooch was nowhere to be seen over the weekend.
Not only was Rod Stewart in a bad mood because Leicester had gained the victory over Norwich that saw the Yellow Shirt with ‘Stewart’ and ‘76’ on the back stamped on but also Rod’s beloved Green and White Hoops were beaten in the Old Firm Derby against their fierce Glasgow rivals Rangers by a 1-0 scoreline.
A certain Scottish/Australian, wearing the Blue of the Gers, was happy and stayed up, watching the Glasgow Derby in Melbourne, way after his usual bedtime of 7.30 PM, well the lad does need his beauty sleep.
It was Bank Holiday Monday before Lennon reappeared humming the tune to one of Sir Roderick’s ditties, ‘He’s Celtic, United but Brendan has decided that Leicester is the best place to be’ Woof Woof!
Man City hammered Arsenal last time out with their 2nd-consecutive victory by a 5-0 scoreline, following the previous week hammering against Norwich by the same score. Ilkay Gundogan (tra-la-la-la-lar!) opened the scoring against the Gunners after 7-minutes with Ferren Torres adding the 2nd midway through the half.
Arsenal were then reduced to 10-men after Granit Xhaka was shown a straight Red Card for a challenge on Joao Cancelo. In truth, 11, 12 or 13 men of Arsenal wouldn’t have beaten City, so the 10-men had no chance.
Gabriel Jesus scored just before half-time, tapping in after great wing-play from Jack Grealish. Roadie Rodri added a 4th after the break before Ferren scored his 2nd of the tie and City’s 5th to round off the comprehensive victory.
Pep 1, quickly shook hands with Pep 2 and had a word in Mikel’s ear, rumoured to have said, ‘Either sort out the Just For, Mik or shave it all off like me!’ Obviously in the native Spanish language.
At this current time, Harry Kane isn’t moving North to the Etihad with the protracted Transfer being put on hold. The deal could have been done if Man City had offered £150 Million, that’s obviously easier to put into a sentence than actually doing it for real, as £150 Million is a lot of money.
However, there is another Transfer Window coming up in January, so depending on where both Man City and Tottenham find themselves at the midway point of the campaign, the deal could be resurrected.
Pep Guardiola has brought in Jack Grealish for £100 Million so the hierarchy at the Etihad, who are not short of a Bob or Two, may just feel that’s enough for the time being. Raheem Sterling, scored 1 of the 4 in the 4-0 victory for England, against Hungary over the International Break.
Man City got the victory at the King Power last season, with goals from Benjamin Mendy and Gabriel Jesus, both in the 2nd-half giving Pep’s High Flying Blues the victory over Brendan’s Wonderful’s by a 2-0 scoreline. Brendan got revenge over Pep, a couple of months later, when Leicester beat Man City in the Community Shield.
888 Sport offer Leicester at 47/10, the draw at 16/5 and slight Odds On 1/2 for Man City to come away with all 3-points.
888 Sport offer 8/5 that Jamie Vardy Scores Anytime and 7/4 that there are Over 3.5 Goals.
MANCHESTER UNITED v NEWCASTLE
15.00 in England
What is strange about these set of Game Week-4 fixtures is both Manchester clubs, kick-off at 15.00 on a Saturday and both are not on any of the live TV slots. How many times previously has that occurred?
Manchester United gained the victory last time out, against Wolves at Molineux by a 1-0 scoreline. Mason Greenwood scored the only goal of the game that did offer up a debate following a foul by Paul Pogba on Ruben Neves in the build-up to the goal.
Whilst it did look like an indiscretion by Paul, United will argue that in the previous fixture against Southampton, the Saints goal came via a foul against Bruno Fernandes in that build-up.
So will feel that it has equalled itself out, however, that shouldn’t be how football matches are decided, especially nowadays with the dreaded VAR on watch. Both incidents were fouls and both should have been flagged up by the Stockley Park brigade.
Ole gave starts to Raphael Varane and Jadon Sancho, with the former having a composed debut and the latter still finding his way in the opening weeks to Jadon’s career at United. Harry Maguire scored 1 of the 4 in the 4-0 victory for England, against Hungary over the International Break.
It was relatively quiet at Old Trafford in the final few days of the Summer Transfer Window, with Manchester United only bringing in a young unknown Portuguese player, called Cristiano Ronaldo. Most had never heard of the young man!
Obviously, that’s just a bit of fun to highlight, if highlights were needed, that the Prodigal Son, CR7, is returning to the Theatre of Dreams after being on his travels for 12-years.
Whilst it was thought that the Transfer saga of the Summer was Man City dilly-dallying with Tottenham over Harry Kane, Ole Gunnar Solskjaer and the United hierarchy were plotting the return of the Portugal legend.
Cristiano has not only injected some new life into the Manchester United faithful but has given those who are not necessarily Red Devil fans the excitement of watching a true life footballing Superstar, once again, in the Premier League. Ronnie, as his mates simply refer to him, left the rain of Manchester in 2009, after winning 3-Premier League titles and a Champions League gong.
Cristiano then went on to achieve 5-Ballon d’Or’s and has so far won over 30 major trophies during his career, including 4-more UEFA Champions Leagues, to add to the 2008 win against Chelsea for United, which his header gave the Red Devils the lead in the rain of Moscow.
There are 4-FIFA World Club Cups, 4-league titles in Spain and Italy, added to the Premier League wins, plus the European Championship for his native Portugal. Along with those major honours, there’s a few FA Cups, League Cups, La Liga Cups and Serie A Cups.
In his first spell for Manchester United, he scored 118 goals in 292 games, including 84-Premier League goals, now needing 16-more to join the 100-Club. That Boy Ronaldo, with his equanimity, makes football look easy.
Edinson Cavani had the famous Number 7 shirt but the Uruguayan, being the immense individual that he is, has given up the 7 and taken over Dan James vacant Number 21, so CR7, now becomes CR7-2.0! It probably helped that Edinson has 21 for the National team and has worn the shirt number on numerous occasions in the past.
In this International Break, young Mr Cristiano surpassed Ali Daei’s all-time leading international goal record of 109, scoring twice against the Republic of Ireland to take his tally to 111. Ronnie also missed an earlier penalty in the fixture against the Irish that would have given the lad a hat-trick.
Whilst scoring the 2nd-goal, in the 96th-minute, CR7 took off his shirt and not only revealed his brilliant toned Torso but received a Yellow Card from the referee.
The significance in that Yellow was huge on several levels as it meant that Cristiano was suspended for the 2nd-World Cup Qualifier against Azerbaijan, allowing the Portuguese star to leave the International arena, head back to Manchester and isolate for 5-days.
The United faithful and the watching Millions throughout the World and surrounding areas (although not live in England!) should now get the chance to see Cristiano Ronaldo in a Manchester United jersey, against Newcastle. Good luck Mr Magpie!
To make way for Cristiano, Daniel James has finally joined Leeds United after the lad was pictured with a Whites shirt over 2-years ago, whilst still at Swansea but that particular deal fell through.
Now United have received £25 Million for the Welsh Winger, £10 Million more than the fee paid to the Swans back in June 2019.
It’s a great move for everyone concerned as Dan wasn’t progressing at Old Trafford, even given adequate opportunities by Ole, most notably against Leeds United.
Whilst not wanting to pour water on the excitement of Cristiano’s return to Old Trafford who will certainly enhance Ole’s Trollies, Manchester United have still not addressed the real problem, that being in Midfield. The narrative from last season will continue, that United won’t win anything with Fred, it’s as simple as that.
As mentioned previously, there is currently radio silence regarding the Brazilian so no comment will be made until further notice. Ole needs to get one, if not two, decent Midfielders in, to compete with the Noisy Neighbours, Klipperty’s Klopp’s and Thomas’s Blue Engines. Without reinforcements in that department, Manchester United will be ‘also rans’ for the time being.
Chelsea have two of the best Midfielders in the World in Jorginho and N’Golo Kante, yet have gone out this Summer and brought in Saul Niguez, considered to be up there himself. Ole, whilst exciting the Devils faithful, is still short of a decent Midfielder.
Scott McTominay isn’t the answer and at the moment is sidelined through surgery on a shoulder injury. Nemanja Matic and Juan Mata are past their sell buys and of course Fred. Donny Osmond has simply gone missing. That’s Van De Beek, by the way, however, may as well be Mr Osmond as the Dutch lad isn’t getting a sniff in the 1st-team.
There is something amiss there, that a player who was lauded by everyone and cost £35 Million, just sits on the bench twiddling his thumbs. In the fixture against Wolves, Ole chose Diogo Dalot (who?) as a replacement for Mason Greenwood, in front of DVDB.
As stated, this isn’t to dampen the enthusiasm of the United faithful after the star-man CR7’s return, it’s just to highlight the fact that Manchester United are light in the Midfield department and won’t win the Premier League anytime soon unless that situation is addressed.
One strange aspect of the Summer Transfer Window that doesn’t concern the Premier League but is worth mentioning, is the fact that Real Madrid were willing to pay Paris Saint-Germain a staggering fee of £189 Million for Kylian Mbappe.
PSG rejected the money and although won’t sell Kylian, this Summer, it does mean that Real Madrid can sign Mr Mbappe, who is 22-years old, on a Free Transfer next Summer, meaning Paris end up with nothing. As a great man once said, ‘Football, it’s a funny old game!’
A quick note on Ali Daei, the Iranian footballer that held the record with 109-goals that CR7-2.0 has overhauled is that those up with the politics of life and nothing to do with the beautiful game will know that the United States of America have been in dispute with Iran for years over different issues.
In the World Cup in France’98, Iran were drawn against the USA for the first time in history and not only did the Iranians put up a fight, the team, that included Mr Daei, defeated the enemy, by a 2-1 scoreline. One abiding memory from the fixture was the Iranians presenting the USA team with flowers before the game.
Football ascends all manners, all political actions, all creeds, never take the game for granted and don’t abuse people, just enjoy what these elite athletes on show provide. Never stop believing in our game!
With respect to Mr Ali Daei, who was exemplary knowing that Cristiano was about to take over the mantle of the leading International Goal Scorer. Newcastle looked for all purpose to have sealed the win last time out, leading against Southampton with injury-time about to end.
Unfortunately for the Toon Army, their beloved Black and Whites conceded a very late penalty, which was converted to snatch a draw from the jaws of victory. Following a goalless 1st-half, Callum Wilson scored early after the break to give Steve Bruce’s Magpies a lead.
After the Saints had equalised, another Saint, Allan Saint-Maximin looked to have given the home team the winning goal, scoring in the 91st-minute to the delight of the faithful, however, the excitement didn’t last when the referee awarded a penalty with the help from the dreaded VAR.
Southampton scored to earn a point from a draw by a Desmond 2-2 scoreline, to the despair of Steve Bruce and the watching home fans. Newcastle have brought in the Mexican youngster Santiago Munoz, who is one for the future.
When that particular signing was announced, John Newsome had a Deja-Vu moment and couldn’t think why? Deja-vu is a feeling of having already experienced the present situation.
John was scratching his head for ages then realised. In a fictional film from 2005, called simply ‘Goal’ a young Mexican footballer signs for Newcastle United. The youngster is called Santiago Munez, granted a slightly different spelling but still a strange coincidence.
Young Santiago became a star and helped the Magpies into the Champions League that resulted in a sequel called, well, ‘Goal 2’ then signed for Real Madrid.
David Beckham, Zinedine Zidane and the majority of the Real Madrid players at the time all had cameo appearances in the film. There was ‘Goal 3’ but no one talks about that one.
Cut to 2021 and real-life, Santiago Munoz, with an ‘O’, not an ‘E’ is in Newcastle with the Toon Army hoping that Life Imitates Art and young Santi, helps the Magpies into the Champions League. It’s more likely that the lad helps Newcastle into the Championship!
As well as Joe Willock a couple of weeks back, that’s the sum total of new signings for the Toon Army to dwell on. At Old Trafford last season, Manchester United ran out easy winners against Newcastle United by a 3-1 scoreline.
Marcus Rashford opened the scoring on the half-hour mark, however, Allan Saint-Maximin quickly equalised to take both teams in level at the break. Dan James and a Bruno Fernandes penalty in the 2nd-half gave the Red Devil’s the win over the Magpies.
888 Sport offer Manchester United at Odds On 2/11, the draw at 11/2 and 45/4 for Newcastle United to come away with all 3-points.
888 Sport offer 5/1 that Cristiano Ronaldo Scores Two Plus Goals and 11/8 that Manchester United Win Both Halves.
SOUTHAMPTON v WEST HAM
15.00 in England
Southampton came from behind twice against Newcastle at St James Park, with goals from Mohamed Elyounoussi and a last-minute penalty by James Ward-Prowse, earning a point from a draw by a Desmond 2-2 scoreline. Once the penalty was awarded in the 95th-minute, there are not many better players to take the spot-kick, than JWP, it’s a shame the lad wasn’t at the Euros with England.
Wreck-It Ralph Hasenhuttl ditched the Peaky Blunders look for the trip up North, with most of the Saints faithful setting off just after midnight for the long journey to Newcastle. James’s converted penalty in the last minute did soften the blow of the trip back home.
Southampton did all their transfer business early doors so Ralph had the Transfer Deadline Day off to hone up on his fashion sense.
West Ham themselves played in an entertaining draw by a 2-2 scoreline, before the International Break with goals from Pablo Fornals and Michail Antonio, against Crystal Palace, to remain unbeaten so far. However, the Hammers did relinquish the top spot to Tottenham.
Jesse Lingard hasn’t returned to London which is what the Bubbles were wishing but with Said Benrahme and Pablo supplying the ammunition for Big Michail, the loss of Jesse shouldn’t impact too much.
West Ham have signed a couple or 3 players in the Transfer Window, with the Croatian, Nikola Vlasic coming to the London Stadium from CSKA Moscow, to go with Kurt Zouma, signing permanently from Chelsea and Alex Kral, in on-loan from Spartak Moscow.
Mr Kral, a 23-year old Midfielder joins fellow Czechs Tomas Soucek and Vladimir Coufal at West Ham. Alphonse Areola came in at the beginning of the Window.
The Big Man, Doctor Declan, scored 1 of the 4 in the 4-0 victory for England, against Hungary over the International Break. This fixture at St Mary’s last season was played in between Boxing Day and New Year’s, however, both must have enjoyed Christmas a bit too much with the game serving up a drab goalless draw before the year came to an end.
888 Sport offer Southampton at 2/1, the draw at 49/20 and 6/5 for West Ham to come away with all 3-points.
888 Sport offer 8/5 that Michail Antonio Scores Anytime and 7/4 that there are Over 3.5 Goals.
WATFORD v WOLVES
15.00 in England
After the opening day victory against Aston Villa, Watford have lost the last 2, the latest being a defeat against Tottenham by a 1-0 scoreline. The Hornets conceded just before half-time and with no further goals ultimately lost the game at the Chas and Dave Memorial Stadium.
The Watford legend that is Troy Deeney has departed the club after 11-years at Vicarage Rd. Birmingham born Troy was a Talisman at Watford and will no doubt be sorely missed, however, Father Time catches up on everyone and now aged 33, it’s no longer conceivable that Mr Deeney can play at the highest level.
Big Troy won’t want to hear that and this EveryTip contributor wouldn’t mention that in the lad’s vicinity, however, it did appear that Troy wasn’t in Xisco the Discos plan for the future. So Troy Deeney has headed home, literally and signed for his hometown club Birmingham City.
The ex-Leeds United, Newcastle and a few other clubs, Lee Bowyer is at the Birmingham helm and is establishing a great squad that John Newsome witnessed first-hand last week when the Brums turned up at Oakwell.
Barnsley hung on for a draw but in truth, Troy’s new club were the better side and with Big TD in the ranks, will be there or thereabouts in the Championship at the end of the season, pushing for a place into the Promised Land.
The Hornet faithful definitely wish Troy Deeney well for the future, that’s without a doubt. Wolves succumbed to the 3rd-straight defeat before the International Break by the same 1-0 scoreline. This time at Molineux against Manchester United.
The single goal conceded had a tinge of controversy involved with Ruben Neves appearing to have been fouled by Paul Pogba in the buildup to the goal. Whilst it did look like a foul, the referee, Mike Dean played on which resulted in the Wolves conceding a goal.
The new manager Bruno Lage can take positives from the 3-defeats knowing that his Gold and Blacks are competing and are not being hammered, however, it is still 3 from 3 in the Loss column that leaves Wolves in a cluster of 3-teams, like the United Kingdom in the Eurovision, with Nil Points.
Adama Traore was subject to a possible move away from Molineux in the Window but Bruno managed to hold on to the speedster, which should please the faithful. The break could have just come at the right time for everyone connected with Wolves, to allow for Mr Lage to regroup and revitalise his chargers.
Watford beat Wolves on New Years Day back in 2020, with the Hornets stinging the Gold and Blacks by a 2-1 scoreline. Gerard Deulofeu scored after 30-minutes to give Watford, under the guidance of Nigel Pearson, the lead at the break. Abdoulaye Doucoure added a 2nd, early in the 2nd-half before the Supermarket man, Pedro Neto pulled a goal back for Nuno’s Wolves.
Watford’s Christian Kabasele was shown a straight Red Card midway through the half to beat his mates into the showers. Unfortunately, Wolves couldn’t capitalise with the extra man, with Watford hanging on for the win.
888 Sport offer Watford at 9/4, the draw at 21/10 and 5/4 for Wolves to come away with all 3-points.
888 Sport offer 8/5 that Cucho Hernandez Scores Anytime and slight Odds On 4/6 that there are Under 2.5 Goals.
CHELSEA v ASTON VILLA
Sky Sports 17.30 in England
Thomas Tuchel’s Blue Engines went toe-to-toe with his fellow German manager Jurgen Klopp’s Reds at Anfield, before the International Break, with both Heavyweight Boxers, settling for a point from a draw by a 1-1 scoreline. This was always going to be a tight affair with John Newsome predicting a goalless stalemate, yet despite both teams scoring, it was still a draw.
Kai Havertz scored a superb header to give Chelsea an early lead, however, the course of the tie turned on the stroke of half-time with Reece James handling on the line, to not only concede a penalty but also see a straight Red Card, to allow the lad to put the kettle on for the half-time cup of tea.
The on-field referee, Anthony Taylor was instructed to go to the pitch-side monitor and on reviewing the incident immediately pointed to the spot, rightly so and then sent young Reece off.
It maybe was a bit harsh on Mr James and the Double Jeopardy rule could have been applied, with the penalty being punishment enough, however, on this occasion, it was deemed a sending off that did in effect, spoil the 2nd-half as Chelsea resorted to putting 10-men behind the ball to hold on for a point.
The Double Jeopardy rule only applies if the initial incident is accidental, so because Reece’s save was deemed on purpose, Anthony had no choice but to issue the Red Card.
There were rumours that Reece James was wanted in the January Transfer Window by the Chicago Bulls but that was rejected by Thomas Tuchel as RJ is needed as a backup to Edouard Mendy, with the lad considered a better stopper than Kepa Arrizabalaga.
The on/off transfer of Saul Niguez was finally confirmed as On after Chelsea landed the Midfielder from Atletico Madrid, for an initial loan-fee of £5 Million before the Transfer Window ‘slammed shut’, with a view to a permanent deal soon.
Aston Villa earned a point from the ‘Dean Smith Derby’ against Brentford, with Emiliano Buendia equalising an earlier Bees strike after 13-minutes. With no further goals, the game ended in a draw by a 1-1 scoreline, giving Villa 4-points from the 3-fixtures so far.
Ollie Watkins, saw the first bit of game-time of the new campaign, getting 12-minutes at the end that will please everyone connected with the Villa.
Conor Hourihane has joined Sheffield United on a season-long loan move away from Villa Park, with the Villains faithful wishing the Irishman good luck for the rest of the campaign.
Mr Hourihane captained Villa in their 6-0 Carabao Cup win over Barrow last week, the lads’ only competitive football this season and the Villa boss Dean Smith hinted that Conor would be allowed to leave if the right offer arrived for the club and the player.
Conor Hourihane needs regular game-time, having entered the final year of his Villa contract and the Blades boss Slavisa Jokanovic will surely give him that throughout the rest of the Championship season.
The influential Midfielder helped Swansea to the Play-off Final last term after joining the Swans on loan in January but is now likely to have made the last loan switch of his career at Villa Park.
Conor is a sublime player but has found the step-up to the Premier League, difficult at times. The Villa fans have reacted to Conor’s move to Sheffield United, wishing him well for the rest of the season at Bramall Lane.
There is one Little Blunt that is over the moon, the ex-Barnsley FC player is on his way. At Stamford Bridge, last season, Dean Smith’s Aston Villa earned an away point from a draw by a 1-1 scoreline, against Frank Lampard’s Chelsea.
Olivier Giroud scored before the break to give the Blues a half-time lead before Anwar El-Ghazi equalised soon after the restart.
Aston Villa took 4-points off Chelsea last season with the fixture at Villa Park on the final day, resulting in a victory to the Claret and Blues by a 2-1 scoreline.
888 Sport offer Chelsea at Odds On 4/15, the draw at 17/4 and 19/2 for Aston Villa to come away with all 3-points.
888 Sport offer 4/1 that Romelu Lukaku Scores First and slight Odds On 20/21 that Chelsea Win To Nil.
LEEDS UNITED v LIVERPOOL
Sky Sports 16.30 in England
Leeds United left it late last time out, with Patrick Bamford scoring in the 86th-minute to earn a point from a draw by a 1-1 scoreline against Burnley at Turf Moor. That’s now 2-Draws and a Loss for Marcelo Bielsa’s Whites who have continued this term the same as last with the energetic style of play that Mr Bielsa demands.
Dan James is finally a Leeds United player after initially being linked with the club in January 2019, when it was thought that the Whites had signed Dan from Swansea for a fee of £11 Million.
DJ was even pictured holding a Leeds United shirt with ‘James’ and ‘21’ on the back but the deal was scuppered and Dan’s shirt changed to the Red of Manchester United but still with ‘James’ and ‘21’.
Over 2-years on, Dan is now the Leeds Man, which looks to be a brilliant move for everyone concerned both at Old Trafford and Elland Rd and of course for Mr James himself. DJ will wear the number ‘20’ at Leeds.
Kalvin Phillips is still a Leeds United player and that will appease the Marching On Together crew, however, it may only be for at least another 12-months and there could possibly be speculation surrounding a move in the January Transfer Window. Marching On Together!
Liverpool earned a great point against the current Champions League holders Chelsea on Saturday, coming from behind to draw by a 1-1 scoreline.
After conceding a goal midway through the 1st-half, with time running out and the half-time break imminent, Liverpool were awarded a controversial penalty after Reece James had handled the ball on the line.
After an age whilst the on-field referee Anthony Taylor and the dreaded VAR confirmed the penalty, Mo Salah converted to take both teams in level at the break.
Whilst controversial and to the dismay of the away team, it was the correct decision which is all that is asked and expected of the Video Assistant Referee.
Although nothing much happened at Anfield on Transfer Deadline Day, there was a significant signing with Jordan Henderson extending his stay on Merseyside by penning a new 4-year deal worth a reported £140,000 a week (a week!) in wages. For some unknown reason, there are still detractors out there in the Footballing World, that think Jordan Henderson isn’t a good player.
To become the Captain of Liverpool is no mean achievement and then occasionally Captain the England National team in the absence of Harry Kane means that Jordan is highly respected by both Jurgen Klopp and Gareth Southgate.
Jordan made his debut for his hometown club Sunderland back in 2008, aged just 18, making just over 70-appearances for the Black Cats.
Hendo has tremendous energy and covers every blade of grass, however, his running style was criticised by Sir Alex Ferguson, who rarely gets things wrong (Kleberson, Eric Djemba-Djemba?) before Jordan signed for Liverpool in 2011 and wasn’t considered good enough to join Manchester United.
How many United fans now, 10-years later, would like the Sunderland youth at Old Trafford? As this is a tipping site, giving predictions, a prediction now, would be that there would be quite a few Manc’s that’s would disagree with Sir Alex.
For some reason, Mr Ferguson had reservations over Jordan because in Fergie’s own word, ‘We noticed that Henderson runs from his knees, with a straight back, whilst the modern footballer runs from his hips. We thought his gait might cause him problems later in his career.’ His gait, by the way, is ‘a persons manner of walking’.
These words were taken from Sir Alex’s Autobiography back in 2013, which is well worth a read. Especially his thoughts on Andy Carroll and Stuart Downing, however, the Big Scott had a ‘Kleberson’ moment, with his overview on Jay Spearing.
It does seem a strange thing to look at but if Jordan is watched, it is correct, however, it doesn’t have appeared to have held him back. In 2019, Jordan became the 5th, Liverpool Captain to get his hands on the European Cup when the Reds defeated Tottenham in the final in Madrid.
Most will say ‘5th?’ Liverpool have won the European Cup 6-times! Correct but Emlyn Hughes lifted both the 1977 and 1978 Cup, with Phil Thompson lifting the trophy in 1981 and Graham Souness in 1984. Stevie G got his hands on the 2005 trophy, leaving Jordan Henderson with the honour of being the 5th.
Following that brilliant 6th European Cup victory, Liverpool then won their 1st-ever World Club Cup, defeating Flamengo by a single Roberto Firmino goal in December 2019. Another trophy that Hendo had to lift and made sure that he bent his knees as not to hurt his back or upset Sir Alex.
Whilst he has often faced unfair criticism throughout his career, it is clear that Mr Henderson is now absolutely invaluable to this Liverpool team, both for his ability as a player and his leadership on the pitch and in the dressing room.
Whilst Gareth Southgate is going with the younger models of Kalvin Phillips and Declan Rice in the Midfield roles, that really is only by the process of evolution with Mr Henderson now in his 32nd-year. The Sunderland native is still a class above and as shown last term, is missed when not part of Jurgen’s Reds.
Sadio Mane gave Liverpool the lead in the 1st-half at Elland Rd last season, before Diego Llorente equalised for Leeds United late on in proceedings to give both a share of the points from a draw by a 1-1 scoreline.
888 Sport offer Leeds United at 18/5, the draw at 31/10 and slight Odds On 12/19 for Liverpool to come away with all 3-points.
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EVERTON v BURNLEY
Sky Sports 20.00 in England
Everton remain unbeaten in their 3-starts of this new season under Rafa Benitez, with the Toffees getting a great away-day victory against Brighton last time out, by a 2-0 scoreline.
Demarai Gray and the Sheffield Superstar 2, Dominic Calvert-Lewin with the goals on either side of the break to give Rafa a brilliant start on the Blue side of Merseyside. Fact!
Dominic’s goal came via the penalty spot after an argument with Richarlison who was going to take the kick. Richy Rich wasn’t happy that Dom was allowed to take the penalty but all was calm after Big DCL converted. This happens in football so no drama.
The victory did come with a cost as Dominic got injured in the game against Brighton and had to withdraw from the England squad.
Rafa Benitez has brought in the excellent Salomon Rondon, who he worked with whilst both were at Newcastle, with Moise Keane being allowed to leave and re-joins Juventus on loan with a view to a permanent deal for around £24 Million.
Burnley gained their 1st-point of the season last Sunday, following a draw by a 1-1 scoreline against Leeds United at Turf Moor.
After 2-straight defeats, Chris Wood scored to give the Clarets the lead and with time running out looked like a win was on the cards, however, Sean’s Boys conceded late on to ultimately snatch a draw from the jaws of victory.
Sean has signed a Defender in this Summers Transfer Window, raiding Swansea to bring in Connor Roberts on a 4-year deal for around £2.5 Million.
At Goodison Park, last term, Chris Wood and Dwight McNeil scored for Burnley before Dominic Calvert-Lewin pulled a goal back for Everton, all before half-time.
With no further goals in the 2nd-half, Sean’s Clarets hung on for the away-day victory over Carlo’s Toffees by a 2-1 scoreline.
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